After Piketty: The Agenda for Economics and Inequality http://amzn.to/2q0TevJ
Themes worth noting from the After Piketty CUNY launch event—that I missed, being on the wrong coast.
After Piketty: The Agenda for Economics and Inequality http://amzn.to/2q0TevJ
Themes worth noting from the After Piketty CUNY launch event—that I missed, being on the wrong coast.
I was about to post this to celebrate the publication of our After Piketty: The Agenda for Economics and Inequality http://amzn.to/2ptneiD—the last thing Meltzer wrote I ever read. I think it is how he would like to be remembered. I think it speaks for itself:
Allan Meltzer (2014): The United States of Envy: "Support for the alleged social benefits of setting much higher marginal tax rates on the highest incomes...
...has now been endorsed by the International Monetary Fund, based heavily on research by two French economists named Thomas Piketty and Emanuel Saez. The two worked together on the faculty at MIT, where the current research director of the IMF, Olivier Blanchard, was a professor. Like Piketty and Saez, he is also French...
This is the illustration Meltzer chose for his piece:
Inclusive AI: Technology and Policy for a Diverse Urban Future https://www.eventbrite.com/e/inclusive-ai-technology-and-policy-for-a-diverse-urban-future-tickets-31896895473: Wed, May 10, 2017 10:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Panel 3: The Future of Work: Automation and Labor
Today is our publication day!
Heather Boushey, J. Bradford DeLong, and Marshall Steinbaum, eds.: After Piketty: The Agenda for Economics and Inequality http://amzn.to/2qgPIRE (Cambridge: Harvard University Press: 0674504771).
Let's see if I can maintain a post an hour today on this, shall we?
Here is my amazon review:
As one of the co-editors of this book, I know it very well. I am greatly pleased with how this project came out—we have very serious people, as Bob Solow would put it, writing very serious takes on what Thomas Piketty has accomplished, where he has gone wrong, and what gaps remain to be investigated by others. Social scientists thinking of citing on, working along lines related to, or drawing on Piketty should certainly read this book. People who have read Capital in the Twenty-First Century who are curious about how serious people are reacting to and assessing the book should read it as well.
Milken Institute: Globalization in the Crosshairs: Tuesday, May 2, 2017 / 2:30 pm-3:30 pm: Beverly Hills Ballroom http://www.milkeninstitute.org/events/conferences/global-conference/2017/panel-detail/6801
Excerpt from J. Bradford DeLong, Heather Boushey, and Marshall Steinbaum: After Piketty http://amzn.to/2paJ5LA: “Capital in the Twenty-First Century,” Three Years Later http://equitablegrowth.org/research-analysis/capital-in-the-twenty-first-century-three-years-later/: "Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century... [C21], is a surprise best seller of astonishing dimensions.
Its enormous mass audience speaks to the urgency with which so many wish to hear about and participate in the political-economic conversation regarding this Second Gilded Age in which we in the Global North now find ourselves enmeshed. C21’s English-language translator, Art Goldhammer, reports in Chapter 1 that there are now 2.2 million copies of the book scattered around the globe in thirty different languages. Those 2.2 million copies will surely have an impact. They ought to shift the spirit of the age into another, different channel: post-Piketty, the public-intellectual debate over inequality, economic policy, and equitable growth ought to focus differently.
Project Syndicate: J. Bradford DeLong: Where US Manufacturing Jobs Really Went: In the two decades from 1979 to 1999, the number of manufacturing jobs in the United States drifted downward, from 19 million to 17 million. But over the next decade, between 1999 and 2009, the number plummeted to 12 million. That more dramatic decline has given rise to the idea that the US economy suddenly stopped working – at least for blue-collar males – at the turn of the century... Read MOAR at Project Syndicate
Eduardo Porter: Good evening. Thanks for coming. There has been a lot of sturm and drang over the last—what?—98 days. Today I read that the administration is preparing an executive order to start the process for the U.S. to leave NAFTA, which was one of Mr. Trump's campaign promises. However, over the past 98 days I have come to realize that perhaps President Trump did not really mean all of the things he said on the campaign trail.
Courtesy of Mark Thoma: Trade, Jobs, and Inequality Video http://economistsview.typepad.com/economistsview/2017/04/trade-jobs-and-inequality-video.html
People: Eduardo Porter, David Autor, Brad DeLong, Ann Harrison, Paul Krugman
People: David Autor, Brad DeLong, Ann Harrison, Eduardo Porter, Paul Krugman
Things we could have talked about:
Equitable Growth in Conversation: A recurring series where we talk with economists and other social scientists to help us better understand whether and how economic inequality affects economic growth and stability. Buy After Piketty: The Agenda for Economics and Inequality
Heather Boushey, Brad DeLong, and Marshall Steinbaum http://equitablegrowth.org/research-analysis/equitable-growth-in-conversation-brad-delong-and-marshall-steinbaum/: After Piketty: The Agenda for Economics and Inequality: Heather Boushey: I am so excited that we are here finally to discuss After Piketty. Many of the people who may be reading this column may not actually have kept a copy of Piketty on their night stand and may not remember all the ins and outs, so I want to start off our conversation by asking you, first, what are the key takeaways from Piketty about the effects of inequality on our economy and our society, and second, how does the election of Donald Trump strengthen or weaken Piketty’s analytical, political, economic case? Read MOAR at Equitable Growth
April 27, 2017 at 08:24 AM in Economics: History, Economics: Inequality, Long Form, Moral Responsibility, Philosophy: Moral, Political Economy, Politics, Streams: (BiWeekly) Honest Broker, Streams: Cycle, Streams: Economics, Streams: Equitable Growth, Streams: Highlighted, Twentieth Century Economic History | Permalink | Comments (7)
| | |
Stephen Cohen and Brad DeLong (2005): Shaken and Stirred https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2005/01/shaken-and-stirred/303666/: The United States is about to experience economic upheaval on a scale unseen for generations. Will social harmony be a casualty?
It has become conventional wisdom that class politics has no legs in the United States today—and for good reason. Regardless of actual circumstance, an overwhelming majority of Americans view themselves as middle-class. Very few have any bone to pick with the rich, perhaps because most believe they will become rich—or at least richer—someday. To be sure, the issues of jobs and wages inevitably make their way into our political campaigns—to a greater or lesser extent depending on where we are in the business cycle. But they seldom divide us as much as simply circle in and out of our political life. Lately anxiety about the economy has been palpable, but for the most part it has not evolved into anger or found specific scapegoats.
April 15, 2017 at 08:14 AM in Economics: Growth, Economics: History, Economics: Inequality, Economics: Information, Long Form, Philosophy: Moral, Political Economy, Politics, Streams: (BiWeekly) Honest Broker, Streams: (Weekend) Reading, Streams: Cycle, Streams: Economics, Streams: Equitable Growth, Streams: Highlighted | Permalink | Comments (6)
| | |
Live from the Human Race Long-Term Planning Bureau: Milken Institute: Global Conference 2017: Globalization in the Crosshairs http://www.milkeninstitute.org/events/conferences/global-conference/2017/program-detail: "May 2: 2:00-3:30 PM: In the 20 years leading up to the financial crisis, international trade grew at twice the rate of global output...
Most of their differences are differences of emphasis.
Mnuchin is drawing the issue narrowly: the particular technologies called "Artificial Intelligence taking over American jobs". And he is, at least as I read him, is elliptically criticizing high stock market values for "unicorns": companies with valuations above a billion dollars and yet no past record or clear future path to producing revenues to justify such valuations. **Read MOAR Over at Project Syndicate
Brad DeLong: Interview: The Politics Guys: "Economic inequality, economic growth, why this is the best time ever to be poor (in the United States, at least)...
(2007): Barbara Ehrenreich's "Nickel and Dimed": Hoisted from the Archives: "I did not even loathe Nickel and Dimed because of the strong pains Barbara Ehrenreich took in her prose to demonstrate that she was not one of "them"...
Joseph Ford Cotto: Prominent economists and politicians often say that free trade will benefit America in the long run. Many Americans disagree strongly. What is your take on this situation?
Dr. J. Bradford DeLong: Well, typically and roughly, the average import we buy from other countries we get for 30% off--we use foreign currency that costs us $1.40 to purchase goods and services made abroad that would cost us $2.00 worth of time, energy, resources and cash to make at home.
March 15, 2017 at 01:37 PM in Berkeley, Economics: Growth, Economics: Inequality, Economics: Macro, Long Form, Philosophy: Moral, Political Economy, Politics, Streams: (BiWeekly) Honest Broker, Streams: Cycle, Streams: Economics, Streams: Equitable Growth, Streams: Highlighted | Permalink | Comments (1)
| | |
Ian Morris (2015): Foragers, Farmers and Fossil Fuels: How Human Values Evolve <http://amzn.to/2lZUel9>
Five Orienting Questions:
It's disturbing. As we face the probable abrogation of NAFTA, possible trade wars with China, Germany, and others, and the total cluster** that is the Trump administration's policies (if any) toward NATO and Russia, a number of really smart and really well-intentioned people are, I think, making rhetorical--and in some cases substantive--errors that are degrading the quality of the debate and increasing the chances of bad outcomes. And they are doing it while trying to be forces for good, light, human betterment, truth, justice, and the American way...
So let me do some boundary policing here...
When Something Is Valuable:
Robert Brenner (1979): Agrarian Class Structure and Economic Development in Pre-Industrial Europe, Past & Present 70 (Feb.), pp. 30-75 <http://www.jstor.org/stable/650345>
Suresh Naidu and Noam Yuchtman (2013): Coercive Contract Enforcement: Law and the Labor Market in Nineteenth Century Industrial Britain, American Economic Review 103 (February): 107–144 <https://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/aer.103.1.107>
Degrees of "Freedom"
Robert C. Allen (2003): Farm to Factory: A Reinterpretation of the Soviet Industrial Revolution (Princeton: Princeton University Press: 0691144311) <http://amzn.to/2kpLZd2>
The Big Question:
Was the Soviet Union an Asian economy, (like) a Latin American economy, a (central or western) European economy, or a settler-frontier economy?
If it was an Asian economy, than it did well on economic growth--even though horribly (save in comparison to Maoist China, the Khmer Rouge, and the Korean Hereditary Dictatorship of the God-Kings Kim) in terms of societal well being.
If it was a Latin American economy, it did OK in terms of economic growth--Allen says "good", but I think he overstates his case: "OK".
If it was a (central or western) European economy, it did very badly--badly enough to prompt its bloodless overthrow.
If it was a settler-frontier economy, its badness attains world-historical levels.
I reject Allen's conclusions, largely because of the regression-discontinuity study I did in the middle of the 1990s:
The discontinuity between the countries on the left and the countries on the right is simply where Stalin's (or Mao's, or Giap's) armies stopped. The communist countries were, as of the moment that the Iron Curtain collapsed, missing 88% of their prosperity as measured by what seems and seemed to be the most natural yardstick.
February 13, 2017 at 02:46 PM in Berkeley, Books, Economics: Growth, Economics: History, Economics: Inequality, History, Moral Responsibility, Philosophy: Moral, Political Economy, Politics, Streams: (Wednesday) Economic History, Streams: Cycle, Streams: Economics, Streams: Equitable Growth | Permalink | Comments (5)
| | |
Every time I start thinking about Thomas Jefferson, I get distracted by the family psychodrama—and by the plight of the Hemings family—and by the fact that TJ named one of his sons by Sally Hemings, born at the start of Jefferson's second term as president, "Madison".
I wonder what Jemmy Madison thought of that, and whether Jefferson told him personally that he had done so...
January 31, 2017 at 06:09 AM in Economics: History, Economics: Inequality, History, Moral Responsibility, Philosophy: Moral, Political Economy, Politics, Science: Cognitive, Streams: (Tuesday) Hoisted from Archives, Streams: (Wednesday) Economic History, Streams: Cycle, Streams: Economics, Streams: Equitable Growth | Permalink | Comments (6)
| | |
Robert Reich (2015): Saving Capitalism: For the Many, Not the Few (New York: Knopf: 0385350570) http://amzn.to/29Viz6w
Can This Capitalism Be Saved?: Robert Reich in his Saving Capitalism: For the Many, Not the Few http://amzn.to/29Viz6w wants to remind us Americans of our strong record of “expanding the circle of prosperity when capitalism gets off track.” We have in our past no fewer than four times built up countervailing power to curb the ability of those controlling last generation’s wealth and this generation’s politics to tune institutions, property rights, and policy to their station.
Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson (2016): American Amnesia: How the War on Government Led Us to Forget What Made America Prosper (New York: Simon and Schuster: 1451667825) http://amzn.to/29ZTpPq
The Loss of Pragmatic Can-Do America: Hacker and Pierson's thesis runs exactly parallel to the thesis of Steven S. Cohen and my Concrete Economics: The Hamilton Approach to Economic Growth and Policy http://amzn.to/2a9xzfg.
Guillaume Daudin et al.: Globalization 1870-1914 <http://tinyurl.com/dl20161210g>
Patrick O'Brien (1982): European Economic Development: The Contribution of the Periphery: "Throughout the early modern era connexions between economies (even within states) remained weak, tenuous, and liable to interruption...
...Except for a restricted range of examples, growth, stagnation, and decay everywhere in Western Europe can be explained mainly by reference to endogeneous forces. The "world economy", such as it was, hardly impinged. If these speculations are correct, then for the economic growth of the core, the periphery was peripheral...
O'Brien's piece is a critique of a large strand of 1970s literature about how exploitation not of internal western European populations but of people outside of Western Europe--Amerindians, mestizo and other inhabitants of the Americas, Asians, and Africans--was the driving force behind the accumulation of capital and the growth of Western Europe from 1500 well into the post-1750 Industrial Revolution era. O'Brien's point is that this argument was always innumerate: trans-oceanic trade flows were simply too small to matter in any simplistic way in which more resources flowing to the elite produce significantly faster economic development. I think his case is air-tight. If you want to draw significant causal links between trans-oceanic exploration, trade, conquest, and exploitation on the one hand and Western European growth after 1500 on the other, you need to tell a much more sophisticated and less simplistic story.
IAMA economist Brad DeLong, an economist to be found at http://bradford-delong.com and @delong, a Berkeley professor and a former Clinton administration official. I am here to talk about why Trump's trade policies are highly likely to be disastrous failures—the normal result of a moron singularity.
But ask me anything.
Live from Bloomberg News: "Tom Keene... featured your excellent Vox essay as his Morning Must Read...
...on Bloomberg Surveillance.... He would be honored to speak with you tomorrow about the essay. Are you available at 9:30am ET/6:30am PT [Thursday] on the phone on Bloomberg Radio?
Yes I am available. It should be fun...
Live at Vox.com: NAFTA and Other Trade Deals Have Not Gutted American Manufacturing—Period: Politically speaking, there was no debate on United States international trade agreements in 2016: All politicians seeking to win a national election, or even to create a party-spanning political coalition, agree that our trade agreements are bad things.... From the left... Bernie Sanders.... From the right—I do not think it’s wrong but it’s not quite correct to call it “right,” at least not as Americans have hitherto understood what “right” is—but from somewhere... now-President Donald Trump....
From the center establishment... popular vote–winning (but Electoral College–losing)... Hillary Rodham Clinton.... “I will stop any trade deal that kills jobs or holds down wages, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership. I oppose it now, I’ll oppose it after the election, and I’ll oppose it as president.…” The rhetoric of all three candidates resonates with the criticism of trade agreements that we heard way back when NAFTA was on the table as a proposal—not, as today, something to blame all our current economic woes on... Read MOAR at http://vox.com
January 24, 2017 at 06:35 AM in Economics: Growth, Economics: History, Economics: Inequality, History, Long Form, Philosophy: Moral, Political Economy, Politics, Streams: (BiWeekly) Honest Broker, Streams: Cycle, Streams: Economics, Streams: Equitable Growth, Streams: Highlighted | Permalink | Comments (68)
| | |
The coming of agriculture would seem to have only pluses:
What's the downside? Jared Diamond says that there are very powerful downsides to the invention of agriculture and the adoption of an agricultural lifestyle? What are they? Is he right?
Must-Read: Guido Alfani: Europe’s Rich since 1300: "Throughout this time, the only significant declines in inequality were the result of the Black Death and the World Wars...
Live from Chicago: American Economic Association: The Nature of Capitalism and Secular Stagnation: Chair: Matias Vernengo...
...Panelist(s): Bradford DeLong, University of California-Berkeley; Han Despin, Nichols College; William Lazonick, University of Massachusetts-Lowell; Deirdre McCloskey, University of Illinois-Chicago; Anwar Shaikh, New School...
Hoisted from the Archives from 2000: The Neoliberal Bet: January 15, 2000 ; Our panelists--Robert Kaplan, Saskia Sassen, and Manuel Castells--are all seeing not a crowded, thirsty world, but a crisis of urban governance. We are becoming an urban world. Cities require a lot of public services to function well. And our panelists seem to have no confidence in the ability of city governments in what we call emerging market economies to deliver services--police, electricity, roads, schools.
Missing the Economic Big Picture: As former WTO Director-General Pascal Lamy said earlier this month in my hearing, quoting from a conversation between Wu Jincang and Chinese Sixth Buddhist Patriarch Huineng:
"When the philosopher points at the moon, the fool looks at the finger". Market capitalism is the moon. Globalization is the finger.
Between the Little Englanders' BREXIT vote and those currently installing Donald Trump in the American presidency in the belief that he will make America great again by negotiating very different "trade deals", there has been a lot of finger-watching this year.
Pascal Lamy: "When the wise man points at the moon, the fool looks at the finger..."
Perhaps in the end the problem is that people want to pretend that they are filling a valuable role in the societal division of labor, and are receiving no more than they earn--than they contribute.
But that is not the case. The value--the societal dividend--is in the accumulated knowledge of humanity and in the painfully constructed networks that make up our value chains.
Weekend Reading: John Steinbeck: The 1930s: A Primer: "Except for the field organizers of strikes, who were pretty tough monkeys and devoted...
Germany does not have the rise of the overclass. And Germany does have the wage stagnation--even though it is done everything right to preserve manufacturing employment and nurture communities of engineering practicing excellence.
Can I take the Germany-U.S. comparison as strong evidence against the "globalization has driven wage stagnation" hypothesis?
Live from Indianapolis: Erik Loomis: Trump's Lies to Workers: "Donald Trump’s absurd attacks on USW Local 1999 president Chuck Jones gives him the opportunity to respond...
Live from Nineteenth-Century London: John Stuart Mill (1848, 1871): Principles of Political Economy: "Hitherto it is questionable if all the mechanical inventions yet made have lightened the day's toil of any human being...
Q: Have BREXIT and Trump increased the probability of a breakup of the eurozone?
That Britain voted for BREXIT, even under the false pretense of an extra 350 million pounds a week for the health service, is a strong indication that the tide of globalization and integration is not irresistible. That Americans... well, Americans did not vote for Trump--they voted for Clinton. That the quirks of the electoral college have made Trump president-elect is a strong indication that the tide of globalization and integration is not irresistible.
I must take exception to something said earlier today by the very sharp Neville Morley:
Neville Morley: When It Changed: "Unless you do assume that one strand of historical development...
...changes in productivity, or technology, or ideology--is determinative of all the others, then there’s no particular reason to assume that everything will change according to the same chronological pattern...
I think he has gone wrong here. In the past--even in the first half of the nineteenth century--the assumption that there was one principal engine driving the belts and powering the orreries of history was just that: an assumption, and a simplifying and probably badly chosen assumption.
But for the past hundred and fifty years things have been different.
In the "long" twentieth century the pace of economic transformation has been so great as to force nearly every other aspect of history to respond according to the same chronological pattern.
Ah. I see that you have found the first draft of my opening lecture for Econ 115 next semester... https://twitter.com/BrankoMilan/status/804205835543019520 https://t.co/lK82RVQudb
I think whether it is more useful to do the tell of 20th century economic history as the "short" 1914-1989 (as Hobsbswm does) or the "long" 1870-2012 (as I want to) rests on two analytical judgments:
Good Riddance to Fidel Castro!: Fidel Castro has retired. Good riddance!!
That the Lenin-Trotsky-Stalin Authoritarian Project of which Fidel Castro was the next-to-last exemplar was not an advance toward but a retreat from a better world was obvious long, long ago. Quite early--Kronstadt?--it was clear to all save the dead-enders that the project was a mistake.
As Rosa Luxemburg wrote in "The Russian Revolution":
November 26, 2016 at 06:32 AM in Economics: Growth, Economics: History, Economics: Inequality, History, Moral Responsibility, Philosophy: Moral, Political Economy, Politics, Streams: (Tuesday) Hoisted from Archives, Streams: Cycle, Streams: Economics, Streams: Equitable Growth | Permalink | Comments (5)
| | |
Ana Navarro: @ananavarro: "Why Miami celebrating? Ppl like my friend, Claudia Puig. Her dad killed by a Castro firing squad. Her uncle was a political prisoner 25 yrs."
Sean Carroll: @seanmcarroll: “'Universal health care' and 'other countries were worse' don’t make Castro worth celebrating. Repressive dictatorships are bad."
Adrian Monck: @amonck: "Channelling Public Enemy on Elvis:"
Stefan Leifert: @StefanLeifert: "Jean-Claude Juncker: 'With the death of Fidel Castro, the world has lost a man who was a hero for many'."
For all of our stooges searching for a Stalin, half-wits hailing a Hitler, morons marching for a Mussolini, and clowns craving a Castro this morning. A suitable epitaph for Fidel Castro, from Gabriel Garcia Marquez:
A vast bureaucratic incompetence affecting almost every realm of daily life, especially domestic happiness... has forced Fidel Castro himself, almost thirty years after victory, to involve himself personally in such extraordinary matters as how bread is made and the distribution of beer...
Jacobo Timmerman (1990): A Summer in the Revolution: 1987: "When I read one of Gabriel Carcia Marquez's essays on the Commandante [Fidel Castro], I was remind of paeans to Stalin...
November 26, 2016 at 06:02 AM in Economics: Growth, Economics: History, Economics: Inequality, Funny, Moral Responsibility, Philosophy: Moral, Political Economy, Politics, Streams: (Tuesday) Hoisted from Archives, Streams: Cycle, Streams: Economics, Streams: Equitable Growth | Permalink | Comments (1)
| | |
Looking Forward to Four Years During Which Most if Not All of America's Potential for Human Progress Is Likely to Be Wasted
With each passing day Donald Trump looks more and more like Silvio Berlusconi: bunga-bunga governance, with a number of unlikely and unforeseen disasters and a major drag on the country--except in states where his policies are neutralized.
Nevertheless, remember: WE ARE WITH HER!
HIGHLIGHTED ONLY | THE HONEST BROKER | EQUITABLE GROWTH | RSS FEED | Short Biography | Talks, Presentations, and Events | Edit Posts | Edit Pages | Edit Content | Berkeley Open Access | Subscribe to Grasping Reality's Feed... | Books Worth Reading | Discussions ||||
OTHER STREAMS: Readings and Reviews | DeLong FAQ | The Honest Broker | Ann Marie Marciarille | Across the Wide Missouri... | Liveblogging History | Storify | On Social Media | This.! | Mark Thoma | Paul Krugman | Noah Smith and Steve Randy Waldman | Zeynep Tufekci | Oliver Willis | Marginal Revolution | Cosma Shalizi | Worthwhile Canadian Initiative | Angry Bear | Antonio Fatas |
"I now know it is a rising, not a setting, sun" --Benjamin Franklin, 1787